Fiji's refusal to pay its dues to USP does not help anybody

The University of the South Pacific vice-chancellor Pal Ahluwalia said the USP's annual budget has been reduced by $US78 million by Fiji's actions.

But Professor Ahluwalia said a lot of work was being done by the governing council to ensure the university continues to achieve results.

"The question of money Fiji owes is really an issue for the USP Council and how the Council and the leaders of the Pacific deal with that.

Court orders oligarch's superyacht to stay in Fiji

The High Court in Suva has allowed an application by the public prosecutor to stop the superyacht Amadea belonging to Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov from leaving its waters.

Kerimov, who was not on board, is facing sanctions from the United States, Britain and the European Union over Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Fiji's Director of Public Prosecutions Christopher Pryde filed the application on Tuesday - a week after the yacht moored at the Lautoka Wharf without customs clearance.

Mr Pryde confirmed that the US is seeking to seize the vessel.

10-try Naduvalo the star man as Fiji claim Singapore title

Australia beat impressive Ireland 21-19 to clinch a hard fought bronze medal and remain in contention for the 2022 Series title.

Prior to Singapore, South Africa had won all four rounds of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2022 to date - and six in total in a row - but in Singapore’s National Stadium it was to be Fiji’s moment.

The last time anyone but South Africa had won a men’s tournament on the big stage was in March 2020 in Vancouver when New Zealand took top honours.

Cyclone Fili upgraded to a category 2 tropical cyclone

Cyclone Fili is located 220km north-west of New Caledonia making its way south at six kilometres an hour.

New Caledonian authorities have placed one northern district on alert level two for cyclone preparedness, while five other northern districts are at alert level one.

In the next 24 hours forecasters expect Cyclone Fili to move south south-east, 180km from Belep.


Fiji quarantine to be removed from 7 April, masks optional from today

Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum announced this in his 2021-22 Revised National Budget address in Parliament last night.

He said after weeks of establishing private testing facilities nationwide, Fiji is ready to remove the three-night stay requirement upon entry into Fiji.

Sayed-Khaiyum said fully-vaccinated visitors, residents and citizens will only need to conduct a rapid antigen coronavirus test within 24 hours of arrival in the country at an approved testing facility.

He said a full list of the locations will be published online.

35 new Covid-19 cases in Fiji

The Ministry of Health confirmed that 24 of the total cases were recorded on Tuesday and 11 new cases in the last 24 hours ending at 8 am yesterday.

MOH said of the 35 Covid-19 cases recorded, 10 were in the Central Division; three were recorded in the Western Division, four cases were recorded in the Northern Division, and 18 were recorded in the Eastern Division.

The Permanent Secretary for Health Doctor James Fong said the public should be wary of efforts to remove all public health measures too soon.

Fiji reports over 300 cases of Leptospirosis

In the Western Division, 162 positive cases were recorded.

There have also been 110 cases in the Central Division, 67 in the North, and 8 cases in the Eastern Division.

The Ministry of Health’s Permanent Secretary, Dr James Fong said the increasing hospitalizations and deaths caused by Leptospirosis in the Western Division are of great concern.

Dr Fong added there have been 108 leptospirosis admissions in the West this year.

Fijian authorities urge public to boil drinking water

Fiji Medical Association President, Doctor Basharat Munshi said the bacteria that cause leptospirosis is spread through the urine of infected animals, which can get into sources of water or soil.

Doctor Munshi added that people relying on boreholes, wells, and creeks for water are most at risk of being infected with leptospirosis.

“If you don’t boil this water- the magic thing about boiling water it kills bacteria and pathogens. So if you drink non-boiled water from these sources which are potentially contaminated with the bacteria then you will get the disease.”

Fiji records 5 new Leptospirosis-related deaths

Permanent Secretary for Health, Doctor James Fong said there have been four deaths in the West from Bukuya, Tavua, and Rakiraki and one in the Northern Division from Macuata.

He said this brings to a total of 19 deaths nationally due to leptospirosis, with 16 deaths in the West, one in the Central Division, and two in the North this year.

Dr. Fong added that Fiji now has an outbreak of leptospirosis in the West and the Central Division, an increasing trend of leptospirosis in the North, and dengue fever in the Western Division.

Cable between Tonga and Fiji expected to be operating today

Tonga Cable Limited chief executive Samuiela Fonua said it will be ready later today but needs time for tests from the repair ship.

The handover to Tonga Cable will be done tomorrow afternoon.

The cable was damaged last month during the volcanic eruption and tsunami that wreaked havoc in Tonga, cutting most communications via phone and internet lines.